Missouri House

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The Missouri House has passed legislation restricting public access to some government data on farms and ranches.

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The Legislature has given final approval to legislation that would create a new circuit court in southwest Missouri.

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A drug that treats heroin overdoses could become easier to acquire in Missouri under legislation in the House.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Legislation requiring a private company to scrutinize Missouri's welfare rolls has won initial approval in the House.

Under the bill endorsed Tuesday, the state would hire a company to check people's eligibility for programs such as food stamps. The company would flag cases for state employees to investigate.

Bill sponsor Rep. Marsha Haefner said the proposal could save more than $20 million over the next three years by eliminating waste and fraud.

Missouri is among the majority of states that restrict access to original birth certificates for people who were adopted.

A proposed ban on lobbyist gifts to lawmakers and other elected officials has initial approval in the Missouri House.

House members voted for the ban in a voice vote Tuesday. Lobbyists currently can give unlimited gifts, such as sports tickets, to lawmakers.

Lobbyists could pay for events if they invite all lawmakers and all statewide elected officials in writing.

Senators Tuesday questioned other ethics-related measures already passed by the House.

Two companion measures that would require Missouri voters to show photo identification at the polls have been passed by a House committee.

The first one, HJR 53, is a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow for a photo ID requirement, and would need to first be passed by Missouri voters.

It appears that Republican leaders in the Missouri House and Senate are putting their money where their mouths are when it comes to ethics changes.

During his opening speech, House Speaker Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, said he'll refer all ethics bills to committee on Thursday, a move that often takes place days, weeks, and sometimes months after the start of a legislative session.

House Speaker Todd Richardson’s legislative career is full of defied expectations.

Before he was elected to House leadership, Richardson helped bring substantial changes to Missouri’s embattled Second Injury Fund – an issue that bedeviled lawmakers for years. And after the misdeeds of his predecessor, the Poplar Bluff Republican rose to the speakership much earlier than anybody expected.

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The Missouri House was 13 votes short of overriding Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of the right to work bill during its veto session yesterday. 

Missouri House Speaker Todd Richardson is maintaining that a proposed new dress code for interns is not, and will not, be among the recommendations for improving their working conditions.

House members have been working on several suggestions, which Richardson says will be released at a later date.

Every bill Missouri lawmakers sent to Gov. Jay Nixon this year has now been signed or vetoed, with only one bill becoming law without his signature.

That bill, HB 137, tweaks the bidding process for license fee offices by doing away with rewarding points to bidders based on how much revenue the state would get back in return. It was co-sponsored by state Rep. Dean Dohrman, R-LaMonte.

Senate floor at the Missouri Capitol
File / KBIA

Missouri Senate leaders have approved a workplace policy book that includes steps for dealing with allegations of harassment.

Missouri House of Representatives

A Missouri lawmaker has had his pharmacist's license placed on probation for writing prescriptions for himself and others without a doctor's approval. 

missouri house floor
File photo / KBIA

A group has been formed to review the Missouri House's intern policy after the former speaker admitted to exchanging sexually suggestive texts with an intern.

It wasn't particularly surprising that state Sen. Bob Onder was pushing hard to get so-called "right to work" legislation through a seemingly intractable Missouri Senate.

The Lake Saint Louis Republican campaigned last year in support of right to work, which bars arrangements that force workers to pay union dues if a majority voted to organize. He supported that measure even though the population of union members has steadily increased in St. Charles County, which may be why his two unsuccessful GOP rivals opposed right to work during the campaign.

Taxes sign
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  A measure that would require Missouri's tax collection agency to notify affected businesses when there are changes in tax policy is headed to the governor's desk.

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  Young adults in the custody of the state who earn money from work or job training may have funds deposited in a trust fund under a measure sent to Missouri's governor today.

Wikimedia Commons / Loavesofbread

The Missouri House passed a bill limiting police use of deadly force today, but it faces a big hurdle on the Legislature's final day.

(Updated 11 a.m. Friday, May 15) Missouri Rep. Todd Richardson, R-Poplar Bluff, was elected and sworn in as new House speaker Friday, and swiftly got the House back to the business at hand — passing bills in the final hours of a surreal last week of session.

"This is not the time for speeches,'' Richardson said, ending tumultuous applause from the packed chamber. "This is a time to get back to work."

Updated 1:40 p.m. Thurs, May 14: Missouri House Speaker John Diehl, R-Town and Country, has announced he's resigning as speaker and as a member of the Missouri House.

His statement was issued less than 28 hours after news broke that he had been exchanging sexually salacious texts with a college-age female intern earlier this spring.

Diehl's statement does not say, however, when he will step down. The General Assembly's legislative session officially ends at 6 p.m. Friday. State Rep. Kevin Engler, R-Farmington, told reporters the House's GOP caucus will select a new speaker tonight.

With no votes to spare, the Missouri House acted Tuesday to override Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of a bill that would reduce the state’s unemployment benefits to 13 weeks, one of the lowest in the country.

The lower benefits would go into effect when the state’s unemployment rate is below 6 percent, as it is now.

students in classroom
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A bill aimed at clamping down on bullying and preventing suicides in Missouri schools is nearing passage.

The legislation passed 129-19 by the House on Monday would require school anti-bullying policies to include stricter procedures for reporting, investigating and responding to bullying.

Lawmakers have passed a bill to stop the state from considering how much money a bidder would return to Missouri if awarded a contract to run a licensing office.

The House on Monday voted 146-5 in favor of the bill, which now heads to Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon's desk.

Missouri House Approves Plans for Repair Projects

May 7, 2015
missouri house floor
File photo / KBIA

The Missouri House gave final approval today to a plan for roughly $300 million in bonds for state building and higher education repair projects.

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Missouri lawmakers sent Governor Jay Nixon the first bill of the 2015 session that deals with the fallout from last year’s unrest in Ferguson. 

Updated 5 p.m., Wed., May 6 -- Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon had harsh words for the General Assembly’s action to override his veto of a bill that shortens the period for low-income families to receive welfare benefits. The bill also imposes new work requirements.

During a stop in St. Louis, the governor said he didn't object to changing the work requirements. But he did object to the way it was done, which his administration says will result in about 6,500 children getting knocked off the state's welfare rolls.

"You don't move the state forward by taking benefits away from 6,500 kids,'' Nixon said. He explained that there were ways, such as a "protected payee program" that would have penalized the parents, but not the children.

"What did a 5-year-old do wrong?" he asked. "There were a lot of ways where kids didn't have to suffer here."

A plan to use bonds for repairs to the Missouri Capitol, universities and other state-owned buildings is moving forward.

A House committee this week outlined how to spend more than $300 million in bonds for building maintenance and new construction.

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Legislators are sponsoring a bill in Missouri that would change the way infant care is handled at childcare facilities. The bill was developed after a child died at a daycare center in St. Louis County, under Senator Scott Sifton’s jurisdiction, and it is aimed at implementing stricter sleeping regulations for infants.

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